Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, (RCPSC) is a national, private, nonprofit organization established in 1929 by a special Act of Parliament to oversee the medical education of specialists in Canada. Its mission is as an organization of medical specialists dedicated to ensuring the highest standards and quality of health care.

The RCPSC acts as the voice of specialty care in Canada. The College is not a licensing or disciplinary body but an association of doctors that is concerned with medical education and setting standards. It ensures that the training and evaluation of medical and surgical specialists, in 60 specialties and two special programs, attain the highest standards. The College, through review and continuing education programs, requires its 38,000 members worldwide to maintain their competence throughout their careers. It acts and speaks out in support of the most appropriate context for the practice of specialty care and the best patient care.

Since its founding, the College has been granted the patronage of the Canadian Monarch, currently Elizabeth II.


The work of the College centres around its prime objective — to ensure the highest possible standards of specialist training and specialist care for the people of Canada. The Royal College:
* Prescribes the requirements for specialty education in 60 areas of medical, surgical and laboratory medicine plus 2 special programs.
* Accredits specialty residency programs
* Assesses the acceptability of residents' education
* Conducts certifying examinations (except in Quebec where it shares this responsibility with the Collège des médecins du Québec)
* Assures a high standard of specialist care through its Maintenance of Certification Program
* Promotes high standards of professional and ethical conduct among its members


A physician may be certified by the RCPSC without becoming a Fellow of the College. However, about 90% of certified physicians decide to become Fellows within 2 years of their certification. Each year, close to 1,500 Fellows from across the country serve the College as members of the standing, advisory and specialty committees, examination boards, and accreditation survey teams. Many more contribute as teachers in specialty residency programs accredited by the College, as contributors to the scientific and social portions of the annual meeting and other continuing education programs, or by involvement in peer review processes.

Medical residents

The resident membership category was established in 1997 to encourage affiliation with the College at an early stage in a resident's career. Those who choose to join the College receive complementary membership during the time they are registered in an RCPSC accredited residency program.

General membership

Currently, the College has over 38,000 members worldwide — comprising Fellows, residents, and Honorary, retired, and emeritus members. Fellows use the designation FRCPC (Fellow of The Royal College of Physicians of Canada) or FRCSC (Fellow of The Royal College of Surgeons of Canada) depending on their qualifications.

Participation with other medical organizations

The College maintains close working relations with the 16 Canadian university medical schools, numerous national professional associations, voluntary health organizations and governmental agencies where it has a respected and influential voice in discussions affecting medical education, medical research and the delivery of high-quality health care to Canadians.

International Jurisdictions

For the international medical graduates of these particular jurisdictions, the College will assess their training to determine the extent to which they have successfully met and completed the Royal College training requirements. When the training is deemed comparable and acceptable, the International Medical Graduates are ruled eligible to take the Royal College certification examination. Success at the certification examination will lead to Royal College certification. [refer to Jurisdiction Approved Training, International Postgraduate Medical Education [] ] There are ONLY international jurisdictions from these countries/regions below that the RCPSC has assessed and deemed as having met RCPSC criteria. By the final decision of the Medical Council of Canada, the RCPSC has discontinued the process of assessing Postgraduate Medical Education systems (PGME) for International Medical Graduate (IMG) applicants seeking RCPSC Certification. The Royal College will not process any application for credit for training anymore in International PGME systems not listed below. Note that medical graduates trained in the United States are "not" considered "International" by the RCPSC, [cite web|url= |title=Alternate Routes to Certification for International Medical Graduates (IMG) |publisher=Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons |date=2007-02-25 |accessdate=2007-08-09] because M.D.-granting schools in both Canada and the U.S. are accredited by the same body, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.

Minimum years of training in RCPSC accredited programs

*Anatomical pathology - 5 years
*Anesthesiology - 5 years
*Cardiac surgery - 6 years
*Community medicine - 5 years
*Dermatology - 5 years
*Diagnostic radiology - 5 years
*Emergency medicine - 5 years
*General pathology - 5 years
*General surgery - 5 years
*Hematological pathology - 4 years
*Internal medicine - 4 years
*Medical biochemistry - 5 years
*Medical genetics - 5 years
*Medical microbiology - 5 years
*Neurology - 5 years
*Neuropathology - 5 years
*Neurosurgery - 6 years
*Nuclear medicine - 5 years
*Obstetrics and Gynaecology - 5 years
*Ophthalmology - 5 years
*Orthopedic Surgery - 5 years
*Otolaryngology -5 years
*Pediatrics - 4 years
*Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation - 5 years
*Plastic Surgery - 5 years
*Psychiatry - 5 years
*Radiation Oncology - 5 years
*Urology - 5 years

ee also

* Medical Council of Canada
* List of Canadian organizations with royal patronage
* Royal College of Physicians
* Royal College of Surgeons
* College of Family Physicians of Canada


External links

* [ Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada]

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